Best-selling journalist Antony Loewenstein trav­els across Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti, Papua New Guinea, the United States, Britain, Greece, and Australia to witness the reality of disaster capitalism. He discovers how companies such as G4S, Serco, and Halliburton cash in on or­ganized misery in a hidden world of privatized detention centers, militarized private security, aid profiteering, and destructive mining.

Disaster has become big business. Talking to immigrants stuck in limbo in Britain or visiting immigration centers in America, Loewenstein maps the secret networks formed to help cor­porations bleed what profits they can from economic crisis. He debates with Western contractors in Afghanistan, meets the locals in post-earthquake Haiti, and in Greece finds a country at the mercy of vulture profiteers. In Papua New Guinea, he sees a local commu­nity forced to rebel against predatory resource companies and NGOs.

What emerges through Loewenstein’s re­porting is a dark history of multinational corpo­rations that, with the aid of media and political elites, have grown more powerful than national governments. In the twenty-first century, the vulnerable have become the world’s most valu­able commodity. Disaster Capitalism is published by Verso in 2015 and in paperback in January 2017.

Profits_of_doom_cover_350Vulture capitalism has seen the corporation become more powerful than the state, and yet its work is often done by stealth, supported by political and media elites. The result is privatised wars and outsourced detention centres, mining companies pillaging precious land in developing countries and struggling nations invaded by NGOs and the corporate dollar. Best-selling journalist Antony Loewenstein travels to Afghanistan, Pakistan, Haiti, Papua New Guinea and across Australia to witness the reality of this largely hidden world of privatised detention centres, outsourced aid, destructive resource wars and militarized private security. Who is involved and why? Can it be stopped? What are the alternatives in a globalised world? Profits of Doom, published in 2013 and released in an updated edition in 2014, challenges the fundamentals of our unsustainable way of life and the money-making imperatives driving it. It is released in an updated edition in 2014.
forgodssakecover Four Australian thinkers come together to ask and answer the big questions, such as: What is the nature of the universe? Doesn't religion cause most of the conflict in the world? And Where do we find hope?   We are introduced to different belief systems – Judaism, Christianity, Islam – and to the argument that atheism, like organised religion, has its own compelling logic. And we gain insight into the life events that led each author to their current position.   Jane Caro flirted briefly with spiritual belief, inspired by 19th century literary heroines such as Elizabeth Gaskell and the Bronte sisters. Antony Loewenstein is proudly culturally, yet unconventionally, Jewish. Simon Smart is firmly and resolutely a Christian, but one who has had some of his most profound spiritual moments while surfing. Rachel Woodlock grew up in the alternative embrace of Baha'i belief but became entranced by its older parent religion, Islam.   Provocative, informative and passionately argued, For God's Sakepublished in 2013, encourages us to accept religious differences, but to also challenge more vigorously the beliefs that create discord.  
After Zionism, published in 2012 and 2013 with co-editor Ahmed Moor, brings together some of the world s leading thinkers on the Middle East question to dissect the century-long conflict between Zionism and the Palestinians, and to explore possible forms of a one-state solution. Time has run out for the two-state solution because of the unending and permanent Jewish colonization of Palestinian land. Although deep mistrust exists on both sides of the conflict, growing numbers of Palestinians and Israelis, Jews and Arabs are working together to forge a different, unified future. Progressive and realist ideas are at last gaining a foothold in the discourse, while those influenced by the colonial era have been discredited or abandoned. Whatever the political solution may be, Palestinian and Israeli lives are intertwined, enmeshed, irrevocably. This daring and timely collection includes essays by Omar Barghouti, Jonathan Cook, Joseph Dana, Jeremiah Haber, Jeff Halper, Ghada Karmi, Antony Loewenstein, Saree Makdisi, John Mearsheimer, Ahmed Moor, Ilan Pappe, Sara Roy and Phil Weiss.
The 2008 financial crisis opened the door for a bold, progressive social movement. But despite widespread revulsion at economic inequity and political opportunism, after the crash very little has changed. Has the Left failed? What agenda should progressives pursue? And what alternatives do they dare to imagine? Left Turn, published by Melbourne University Press in 2012 and co-edited with Jeff Sparrow, is aimed at the many Australians disillusioned with the political process. It includes passionate and challenging contributions by a diverse range of writers, thinkers and politicians, from Larissa Berendht and Christos Tsiolkas to Guy Rundle and Lee Rhiannon. These essays offer perspectives largely excluded from the mainstream. They offer possibilities for resistance and for a renewed struggle for change.
The Blogging Revolution, released by Melbourne University Press in 2008, is a colourful and revelatory account of bloggers around the globe why live and write under repressive regimes - many of them risking their lives in doing so. Antony Loewenstein's travels take him to private parties in Iran and Egypt, internet cafes in Saudi Arabia and Damascus, to the homes of Cuban dissidents and into newspaper offices in Beijing, where he discovers the ways in which the internet is threatening the ruld of governments. Through first-hand investigations, he reveals the complicity of Western multinationals in assisting the restriction of information in these countries and how bloggers are leading the charge for change. The blogging revolution is a superb examination about the nature of repression in the twenty-first century and the power of brave individuals to overcome it. It was released in an updated edition in 2011, post the Arab revolutions, and an updated Indian print version in 2011.
The best-selling book on the Israel/Palestine conflict, My Israel Question - on Jewish identity, the Zionist lobby, reporting from Palestine and future Middle East directions - was released by Melbourne University Press in 2006. A new, updated edition was released in 2007 (and reprinted again in 2008). The book was short-listed for the 2007 NSW Premier's Literary Award. Another fully updated, third edition was published in 2009. It was released in all e-book formats in 2011. An updated and translated edition was published in Arabic in 2012.

The world stops

Road to Surfdom discusses the superficiality of the Australian media:

“Apparently a woman from Tasmania who lives in Denmark had a baby. The Latham diaries are so last week. Or was it the week before?”

Tim Dunlop has a point. The Sydney Morning Herald features the couple on its front page, its London-based correspondent, James Button, has been sent to Copenhagen, and vacuousness is turned into “news”:

“The new prince of Denmark will sleep ‘within an arm’s length’ of his parents, Crown Prince Frederik has told reporters at Copenhagen’s central hospital, where his wife, Crown Princess Mary, is recovering after the birth of the couple’s first child on Saturday morning.

“As speculation turned to when the baby would be first shown in public – possibly not until Wednesday or Thursday – Prince Frederik’s delight dominated Danish media coverage.

“Prince Frederik, who cut the umbilical cord, said he shed a tear at the birth. ‘You don’t stand there and act like Superman,’ he told the newspaper BT.”

An Australian woman has a child. She lives in Denmark and has married into royalty. The birth has no impact on Australia whatsoever.

Celebrity culture is not news. But then, the Sydney Morning Herald is increasingly not serious about real news. Its website leads with “Who makes Sydney’s A-List?”

7 comments ↪
  • boredinHK

    AL, great nickname , if it is still in use. I'd reject "Lowy" as well.You often comment on what you term the shallowness of the australian media but are you really prepared to accept this may just reflect the shallowness of the readers? This analysis isn't going anywhere for being repeated frequently.

  • Antony Loewenstein

    It's a two way street, to be sure. But for editors to simply say, 'readers demand this' isn't good enough. Many people perhaps wouldn't want to read about death in Iraq – and indeed, we do read less about this – but all depends on your defintion of media and its role.And, "Lowy" is, well, all very 1992 for me.

  • boredinHK

    I think this ties into an earlier comment you made about newspapers a friend of yours had brought back from Ghana.You noted that there was little careful or in depth analysis if issues from South America or Africa in the australian newspapers. Perhaps there would be more available than we imagine but it will be in spanish language papers read by the south american communities throughout Australia.Likewise there will be plenty of news about China in the chinese language papers – and I'm sure the Wen Wei Po Group papers will be there trumpeting the Party line as well. Perhaps it would be more useful for readers to have a "Daily Briefing" style of newsletter of the foreign language papers ? We could obtain more relevant and informed information from these sources . My experience of foreign correspondents from australian papers hasn't impressed me that much .(AF Review excepted! )

  • Antony Loewenstein

    Could be interesting, and I wish I could provide that,but alas, time and resources…

  • Pete's Blog

    Look sex sells.And I have a suspicion that Fred and Mary (but not the perpetual Virgin Mary) have had SEX at least once.

  • unique_stephen

    Let us eat our cake, it's a royal birth. But I must say – royal or not, she's so….. Womans Weekly… so dull.

  • anthony

    An Australian woman has a child. She lives in Denmark and has married into royalty. The birth has no impact on Australia whatsoever.Even if minor, the birth does impact Australia.The influence of Princess Mary as a mother to this child will inevitably turn Christian (I believe this is what he will be called, the future monarch and thus chief executive in Denmark) into a pro-Australian leader. A pro-Australian Denmark- although it already is- will no doubt have some, albeit limited, influence on EU decisions, especially relating to agriculture and more generally EU economics.The number of Danish tourists visiting Australia hopefully loaded with kroner (or Euro’s, whatever) it is argued will also continue to grow as a result of Mary’s marriage into royalty.On top of this, and a less positive impact, the birth apparently warrants the Tasmanian State government lavishly spending tax-payer’s dollars on ‘booties’ for both Tasmanian children, and the new Prince. Apparently we are also sending a pair of (cancer-free) breeding devils to Denmark, and a newly crafted christening spoon.As Tasmania is effectively the Welfare State- no doubt these costs will be met by the Federal government, thanks to your labour.Unique Stephen, with a name like that everyone must be dull to you ;)I’ve actually heard Mary was a bit *promiscuous* (hmm… tried to find a better word in the MS thesaurus, interestingly ‘loose’ came up) before dulling herself down for royalty. It’s that Hobart nightlife…